Welcome to

The Parent & Teen Toolbox Podcast

FEATURED EPISODE

EP 00 – About The Parent Toolbox Podcast

This podcast is for those of us who are parenting teenagers.

Cai Graham’s straight-talking insights and tools & techniques are designed to equip parents (and teenagers) with the tools for navigating adolescence.

Recent Episodes

EP 37 – Clare Ford – Model the Behaviour You Want to See

In this episode, we are talking about how many parents are struggling with the changes we are seeing in our children’s education. Whilst there is still a “preferred path” proposed by our education system … more and more parents are finding that this model might not be best supporting their child’s temperaments, interests, and needs.

EP 36 – Andrea Davis – Intentional Tech Use – Using Technology Wisely

Andrea suggests creating a Family Tech Plan – based on the open discussions that you have already had with your children. We talk about how we can differentiate the use of constructive and destructive screen use (Education -v- mindless scrolling).

EP 35 – Tia Fagan – How to Avoid Parenting From Fear

Our children have so much to navigate at the minute, that it can be really daunting for parents to learn how to relinquish control. It’s our responsibility to guide our children through all the challenges and obstacles that they are facing. If you can relate to this, you’ll love this episode with Tia Fagan, who encourages us beautifully to parent from a place of curiosity rather than fear.

EP 34 – Elena Joy Thurston – Helping Straight Parents Better Understand LGBTQ

Throughout this episode, I came from a place of learning – and Elena kindly fielded my clunky questions with kindness and compassion. We dived right in, discussing the dangers of conversion therapy (there is a 57% suicide rate with this treatment); and how this comes from wanting the ‘best for our kids’ whilst parenting from fear.

EP 33 – How To Parent When You Are Struggling

2020 has been an incredible year – and for many ( it is late October at the time of recording ) it is beginning to take its toll.

We are heading into a winter of uncertainty and this is creating a huge amount of stress for many families. So how can parents parent from such a place of unreliability and confusion? In this solo episode I discuss what parents can do.

EP 32 – Doreen Steenland – Adopting the “Coach Approach” to Parenting

In this episode, we discuss the importance for us parents to be aware of what we are being exposed to and how, by monitoring these brain hacks, we can adopt a less reactionary approach to parenting.

In turn, this awareness helps us to calmly guide our children through the myriad of daily challenges that they face throughout the adolescent years.

EP 31 – JoBeth Evans – Helping Your Teenager to Find Joy in the Unknown

In this episode, we are discussing how our teenagers are adjusting – and how we can support them through this process. JoBeth suggests trying thoughts on for size.

It’s important to acknowledge that we don’t know what’s going to happen in the future – and we need to be OK with that.

EP 30 – Sonja Montiel : Schooling -v- Learning – Rebuilding Our Expectations

In this episode we are talking about some of the difficulties our children are experiencing whilst transitioning back to school/university after a prolonged period away from education due to the Coronavirus.

We talk about how we can help our children to redefine what education means to them – and rebuilding expectations; because things are changing so rapidly at the minute.

EP 29 – Kim Muench : Parenting with Intention and Guidance

In this episode Kim and I explore the importance of hearing that inner voice and sometimes, relinquishing control. As parents, it’s scary to drop the reins – but by allowing our children to lead the way in their own lives, we set ourselves up for more connection and less confrontation.

“Our children come through us, not for us, but for the lessons they reflect to us, during their journey, in an effort to grow us up along the way.” 

EP 28 – Simon Benn : Mastering Imperfection, Perfectly

In this episode, I am speaking with Simon Benn: The Children’s Happiness Expert. Simon helps Parents to Inspire Their Children to be Confident, Resilient & Happy Through Fun!

“I empower parents to inspire their children to be confident, resilient & happy with a fun process that’s already helped 1,600 8 to 11-year-olds.”

EP 27 – Aparna Venkataraman – Sensory Self Care for Parents and Teens


In the episode, I talk with Aparna Venkataraman about how sensory self-care can really help us get in touch with our emotions – and she offers suggestions on how to deal with that.

 Aparna explains the effectiveness of breathwork and meditation in the simplest of terms – so that even the beginner will leave this episode with calming techniques that will help parents reconnect with themselves and their families.

EP 26 – Starting University/College and the Empty Nest

This is a solo episode by me.

If your child is off to University / College / Leaving Home … then I want you to stop for a minute. Pat yourself on the back and congratulate yourself. You are about to launch your child as a fully-fledged young adult into the big wide world.

THIS is what you have been leading up to.

EP 25 – 10 Tips for Coping with Back to School Anxieties

This is a solo episode by me.

I am having many parents contact me about coping with back to school anxieties. Our kids are returning to school following 5 months of social distancing and homeschooling. It is an uncertain time for many families; and many of our children are struggling.

I offer 10 Tips for Parents – to better deal with the Transition of Returning Back to School.

EP 24 – Claire Cetti – From Conflict to Connection in 5 Easy Steps

If you are a parent of a TEEN or TWEEN – then you will be no stranger to arguments in the home – I’m afraid to say that it’s a rite of passage!


But my guest on this episode, Parent Coach Claire Cetti, has developed a 5 step process that helps parents to move from Conflict & Anger to Calm & Connection within the family.

EP 23 – Becca Cornford : Promoting Wellbeing at Home & at School

In this episode, I talk with Becca Cornford about just that. Her family was hit by a ‘curve-ball’, not once but THREE times. Here she discusses how she and her family found the time to thrive and properly connect.

And through all this, she started a business; which helped both her and her family to find some levity in an already serious situation.

EP 22 – Piers Day – Building Better Relationships

We all know the importance of talking more with our kids – and how getting them to open up can not only help their mental health – but also start building stronger relationships within the family.

This episode is jam-packed with practical tools to help parents open up conversations with even the most reluctant teenager.

EP 21 – Natalie Syrmopolous – Adapting to the New Parenting Paradigm

Our childhood experiences stem from the old Parenting Paradigm – that one of “Children should be seen and not heard.” Much has shifted since then.

Natalie says “Kids’ temperaments are more robust now and this often makes parents quite uncomfortable.”

Listen to this episode where we discuss Natalie’s 5 Step Process to More Evolved Parenting “



EP 20 – Dear Struggling Teenager

In the previous episode, I wrote a letter to “A Struggling Parent” – so, it’s only fair I write a letter to “A Struggling Teenager.”

If you are parent listing to this – invite you to share this episode with your child. It might help them understand what’s going on in their heads.

EP 19 – Letter to a Struggling Parent

They do say :

“You are only as happy as your saddest child”. When your child is struggling, as their parent, it can occupy your every waking thought. 

How can you share these feelings with anyone else?

 Speaking your fears and worries out loud would be admitting that you.

Ep 18 – Surviving the School Holidays

In this episode, I give you ideas on how to support your child develop their kitchen skills; how to look after themselves, and the importance of managing their own finances for example.

Ep 17 – Is Your Child Under Achieving

In this episode, I discuss the difference between Under-Achieving and Not Performing. I explain why, more often than not – your child’s lack of interest in their studies and schoolwork is more a result of Fear rather than Laziness.

EP 16 – Why Your Teenager Needs Boundaries

In this episode, I discuss the importance of sticking to your guns and having healthy boundaries for your child to adhere to. Boundaries are often be greeted by teenagers with repeated objections – but our children do indeed thrive when there are clearly defined parameters to live by  (just like motorists adhering to the Highway Code) – without specific rules, family life would be chaotic.

EP 15 – The Importance of Sleep

In this episode, I talk about the importance of sleep. How teenagers have a different sleep cycle than parents and why it’s important for us to adjust to this.

EP 14 – How to Create a Brighter Future

In this episode, I talk about the importance of taking responsibility and planning your own future. It might feel as though the future looks dreary – but only if you let it!

EP 13 – How to Talk to your Child about Racism

There is so much unrest at the moment following the death of George Floyd – a black man who died from asphyxiation whilst in police custody because a white police officer knelt on his neck for 9 minutes.

EP 12 – How to Communicate with an Uncommunicative Teen

In this episode, I talk about how to communicate with a teenager who doesn’t really want to talk to you.
When teenagers are in the home – communication suddenly takes on a different form!

EP 11 – Your Teen Knows Best

In this episode I explain why it’s important to stop Managing your Teenager and start Mentoring them.
Teenagers’ brains are under construction – and with this comes chaos and overwhelm.

EP 10 – 5 Tips to Beat Negative Thinking

In this episode, I give you 5 techniques that will help you to start to think more positively. The media is spewing out so much negativity, which if unchecked can really affect our mental wellbeing.

EP 09 – 12 Tips to Combat Sibling Rivalry

In this episode, I am giving you some pointers on how to Combat Sibling Rivalry.
You’ll never be able to stop the quarrels and the arguments between the kids – and nor should you.

EP 08 – Managing Your Anxiety Levels

We find ourselves in strange times at the minute. Parenting is very different. Globally, many countries are in lockdown, in a bid to ‘Beat The Coronavirus’.

EP 07 – Finding a Work-Life Balance

In this episode, I am providing pointers for those parents who are needing to work from home.Globally, many countries are in lockdown, in a bid to ‘Beat The Coronavirus’.

EP 06 – The 10 Golden Rules of Parenting ( Part 2 )

There is always a positive intention. We will see the world differently.  The magic of small things.  There is no such thing as failure.  Our three basic needs within the family.

EP 05 – The 10 Golden Rules of Parenting ( Part 1 )

The old ways of thinking have to go. With change come opportunities. What do you focus on you attract?  Suspend your critical mind.  You cannot change another person.

EP 04 – Looking After You

If you aren’t prioritising yourself – how can you look after your nearest and dearest when the going gets tough? If you are running on empty, you will start feeling the struggle.

EP 03 – COVID 19 – Supporting an Elderly Relative

In this episode, I discuss some of the practicalities that might help you and your loved ones cope with the coronavirus disruptions. Parenting teenagers and younger children have their own challenges – and now, to some extent, you might feel you are having to parent the older generation as well.

EP 02 – COVID 19 – How to Talk to Your Child About the Coronavirus

I have decided to start this podcast with a COVID-19 Series where I support parents throughout this time. This episode helps you if you are struggling with your child and need to reassure them during this pandemic.

EP 01 – COVID-19 – Living under the Same Roof as your Teenager

This episode helps you if you are raising teenagers. Here, I offer you support and suggestions, helping you to cope with family life at home.
Living in such close proximity with our teenagers; and with the current restrictions offering little respite, it can indeed be a strain for all us!

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